Exercise key in reduction of back pain

Estimates from the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2011-2012 National Health Survey found that three million Australians suffer from back problems. Furthermore, approximately 70-90 per cent of people will suffer from lower back pain at some point in their lives.

However, a new study from the University of Sydney offers a feasible and healthy solution; discovering an important link between exercise, alone or with education, and the reduction of lower back pain. Researchers reviewed 23 studies that included nearly 31,000 people and found that regular exercise reduced the risk of low back pain by 35 per cent and the risk of time off work due to back pain by 78 per cent. What’s more, exercise and education reduced the risk of a low back pain episode by 45 per cent.
The findings also showed, however, that the benefits of exercise and education were reduced after one year, while the benefits of exercise alone disappeared after one year.

Daniel Stevens of the University of Sydney explained that, ‘this finding raises the important issue that, for exercise to remain protective against future (low back pain), it is likely that ongoing exercise is required.’

Source: JAMA Internal Medicine